The 'smart' holograms can be used to test blood, breath, urine, saliva or tear fluid for a wide range of compounds, such as glucose, alcohol, hormones, drugs, or bacteria. When one of these compounds is present, the hologram changes colour, potentially making the monitoring of various conditions as simple as checking the colour of the hologram against a colour gradient. Clinical trials of the holographic sensors to monitor glucose levels and urinary tract infections in diabetic patients are currently underway at
The interdisciplinary project by researchers from the
When in the presence of certain compounds, the hydrogels either shrink or swell, causing the colour of the hologram to change to any other colour in the entire visible spectrum, the first time that this has been achieved in any hydrogel-based sensor.
A major advantage of the technology is that the holograms can be constructed in a fraction of a second, making the technology highly suitable for mass production. Details of the holographic sensors were recently published in the journal Advanced Optical Materials.
"Currently, a lot of medical testing is performed on large, expensive equipment," said Ali Yetisen, a PhD student in the
The holographic sensors produced by the
In addition to the clinical tests currently underway at Addenbrooke's against current state-of-the-art glucose monitoring technology, the researchers are developing a prototype smartphone-based test suitable for both clinical and home testing of diabetes and clinically relevant conditions.
"In addition to medical applications, the holographic technology also has potential uses in security applications, such as the detection of counterfeit medicine, which is thought to cause hundreds of thousands of deaths each year," said Dr
Keywords for this news article include: Technology,
Our reports deliver fact-based news of research and discoveries from around the world. Copyright 2014, NewsRx LLC
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